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Vinko Motors

Discussion in 'Canada' started by jcb928, Dec 6, 2005.

  1. jcb928

    jcb928 Rookie

    Dec 6, 2005
    12
    Wenatchee&Vancouver
    Full Name:
    James Brown
    I noticed allot of Toronto car dealers on this board and had a quick qustion.

    Does anyone know how "Papa Vinko" is doing from Vinko Motors? My brother used to work for him and I always liked him. (Some of you might not :))
     
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  3. JamesSimpson

    JamesSimpson F1 Rookie

    Jun 29, 2005
    3,624
    Toronto,CANADA
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    James Simpson
    my brother jason and my father know him, apparentley he is a very very nice man, and I remember my brother telling me a story about papa giving him a twenty when he fixed his rolls-royce headlight like 23 years ago.
     
  4. asb9987

    asb9987 F1 Rookie

    Dec 4, 2004
    4,190
    Toronto
    Full Name:
    A. B.
    (put's on flame retardant suit)

    Don't mean to sound like a prick, but what's the point of this post? Interesting first post too :p Hah, sorry bro no offence, I was bored and felt like stirring the fire a bit (you can imagine how slow things have been around here, everyone into depression with the weather and no FCars and all :().
    Welcome to FChat! Fill out your profile when you get teh chance!

    James, you sure that was for fixing the headlight?
     
  5. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
    Toronto
    Full Name:
    Vasco
    Ammz, I can tell you what the point of this is. Vinko is one of the oldest "car guys" around. I can go on forever about him....but I wont. There is some bad and lots of good about him. I will try and be breif about him and tell you some good parts about Papa-Vinko.

    Anyways, Vinko has been around for over 50 years and was one of the top guys to buy Euro cars from FOR YEARS. Many of the successfull guys today bought from him and have dealt and learned from him since they were young.

    James, you can ask Sergio and he will tell you a few stories just like my ex-bosses used to tell me. Classic, classic stories!!! Ask him about how he had all the ferrari's Lambo's (Miuras) just displayed at his place near dundas and bathurst....scattered. James its funny you mention Rolls Royce, if there is anyone who has hussled Rolls and Bentley's in the past half century it will be Vinko. He has had everything. He still has a second building (one of many many maaany buildings) where he keeps very very rare classics like Rolls and Bentley , jags and Deloreans and dozens and dozens of Benz's. Unfortunately they are rotting away (long story). I know because I have seen quit a few.

    Delorean you ask? He used to be a Delorean dealer. In fact he used to be an Alfa Romeo dealer too. Some say he was the first Alfa dealer (ok, Vinko said it once - not sure if it's true because he is kinda losing it now). When I go there I sit in his shag-couch and he tells me some funny stories.

    My ex-boss' Peter from World Fine Cars and Orest from Caliber both started their business buying cars from Vinko over 25 years ago. I can tell you a funny Ferrari 308 story Orest himself told me (Orest who now sells many Ferrari's for 20 plus years). These guys all told me their personal vinko stories. Personally I have done a couple of deals with him too. But it's getting harder and harder to deal with him. In fact I even tried to reach the old guy today - no answer :(

    (On a side note Sergio, if you are reading this I saw some REALLY 80's pictures of you in Orest's foto album he keeps at his office....man you didnt change one bit. You are such an 80's guy! - SICK SICK cars you guys sold back then....if we only had some of those cars back now)

    Many guys started out looking up to Vinko. Learning and doing business with him but unfortunately he is not the Vinko he used to be. He was known as one of the top in North America not only for wholesaling but retailing. Benz used to buy from him even. He is very old and frail now. But will still knock me out.....he is a big, big guy......and may possibly drink me under the table too.

    So, in a nutshell that is PAPA-Vinko. And again these are stories told to me by Vinko himself and other car guys about Vinko.

    After 50 Plus years he is still on the same corner. Minus the exotics and now-classic cars he once had sitting under the cheasy car flags.

    I live right around the corner from him too funny. If anyone has gone to the (Original) California Sandwiches for their famous veal's then you've passed by Papa-Vinko.

    Vasco
     
  6. asb9987

    asb9987 F1 Rookie

    Dec 4, 2004
    4,190
    Toronto
    Full Name:
    A. B.
    Sheesh, now THAT is interesting. Cool read V. man. I hope you know I was just messing about (as I said in the previous posting). Hope I didn't offend anyone! Cool stuff Vasco, this man seems to be a legend with the auto guys in Toronto.
     
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  8. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
    Toronto
    Full Name:
    Vasco

    No hard feelings at all bro. I knew you were joking. ;)

    Im still laughing my arse off at your thread about this

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-389742347205077616
     
  9. asb9987

    asb9987 F1 Rookie

    Dec 4, 2004
    4,190
    Toronto
    Full Name:
    A. B.
    :D Glad I could be of [comedic] service. Me and a few buddies are gonna put together some of our 100s of funny stories we've made up over the past 5 years. Finally gonna organize them up and make a website. NBC, here we come!
     
  10. jcb928

    jcb928 Rookie

    Dec 6, 2005
    12
    Wenatchee&Vancouver
    Full Name:
    James Brown
    "Don't mean to sound like a prick, but what's the point of this post? Interesting first post too Hah"

    I am new on the forum but I know most of the dealers in Toronto know of Vinko and I was just wondering if he was still around.

    "Many of the successful guys today bought from him and have dealt and learned from him since they were young."

    Not only that but I know Vinko helped Phaff & Maranello get started.

    "Ask him about how he had all the ferrari's Lambo's (Miuras)"

    Ask Papa Vinko about being pulled over in a Miura with his wife and baby in the car... The baby was in the trunk..... I think it was Steve not John... :)

    "But it's getting harder and harder to deal with him. In fact I even tried to reach the old guy today - no answer"

    When I left Toronto in 01 his son John (from Gentry) was helping him out more but that probably didn't last long. I guess Morris is long gone?

    "He still has a second building (one of many many maaany buildings) where he keeps very very rare classics like Rolls and Bentley , jags and Deloreans and dozens and dozens of Benz's. Unfortunately they are rotting away (long story). I know because I have seen quit a few."

    Down in Etobicoke? He also owns the repair shop next door and the house on the other side!!! My brother is the one who told him about the building being for sale back in 1998 or 99.

    Do you know if the Stanek's (former M.S Motors guys) are still operating the repair shop across the street? I think it is called Euromotion?

    "I live right around the corner from him too funny. If anyone has gone to the (Original) California Sandwiches for their famous veal's then you've passed by Papa-Vinko."

    If anyone lives around Vinko's they probably owe him rent :) He owns most of that block except for 7-11 if I remember. Don't go with Vinko to the Casino on Rent day... ;)
     
  11. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
    Toronto
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    Vasco
    Hahaha, yes. You seem to know him well. You are right about owning blocs of houses. Fortunately the Italians and Portuguese prefer to buy buy buy. Parents only rented the first little while when they got to this country.
    You know to the west of him they built those goverment houses and the government pays him a **** load of rent for that alone. Damn!

    Yes, the building is the one in Etobicoke and yes that shop is next door in another building he owns. They pay him rent. And yes Euromotion is still there across the street. It's mainly run by the son (Stanek's son?) Stanek worked for the legendary JS Automobiles The RUF dealer at the time. Correct?

    I had to deal with Stanek once to do an inspection on a turbo diesel benz. Nice place. What's the Vinko story there?

    Yes John P. was at Gentry and not helping his father-Vinko for reasons we both know. Recently there was some very serious issues regarding John as well. All I can say is that the guy did not deserve it from what I was told by many many people. (Long story - and I dont know the story well enough to say anything).

    I don't know who Morris is sorry :(. I may be too young to have met the REALLY old school henchman he had around. However, do you know Austin? If so, not sure if that is a good thing hahah. ;) He is still around. Also, speak to him once in a blue moon...yesterday infact.

    As for the Casino? Don't even go there. No personal experience.....just more papa stories upon papa stories.

    You can write a book on this guy I tell yah. Let's see if he'll return my call today. I BET he wont LOLLL.

    V.
     
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  13. jcb928

    jcb928 Rookie

    Dec 6, 2005
    12
    Wenatchee&Vancouver
    Full Name:
    James Brown
    "I had to deal with Stanek once to do an inspection on a turbo diesel benz. Nice place. What's the Vinko story there?"

    The Staneks used to be across the street (Vinkos repair shop Building) but they closed it down and then opened Euromotion across the street. They were going to buy the building Vinko is in but he beat them to the punch. Vinko used to use them to fix his cars (help pay the rent) but I am not sure if they still deal with Vinko.

    Paul is a good guy (just not organized) and his father Mike is a funny guy and a great Mercedes mechanic (when he works on them).

    "However, do you know Austin?"

    Oops, I was thinking of Austin!!! Morris used to be in the building in Etobicoke before Vinko bought it. Here is a all you need to know about Austin, He had Vinko buy a 1990 Porsche "Carrera S2" from a dealer in St Catherines. Anyway Vinko thought he was buying a 911 C2 but Austin bought a 944 S2 LOL


    What is the car place to the West of Vinkos? "Benitos" or something? If Vinko ever tells you he is the "King of Dundas" tell him the you heard Benitos is :)
     
  14. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
    Toronto
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    Vasco
    Euromotion is still there. Yes, Paul seems like an A1 guy. And yes, very organized but unorganized at the same time. Hard to explain. Kinda reminds me of the European way of working....maybe thats why they are called Euromotion? ;) I really dont think Vinko uses them anymore. He gets pissed off at everyone nowadays. He has another guy on Dundas which you will know.

    heheh, king of Dundas?! You mean Bentos the Portuguese dude? Funny you say "Benitos". Benitos used to be a long time Italian bar (more like institution, club ;) ) on nearby Little Italy College st.

    Anyways, Bentos is long time auto/repair/sales business guy. That guy is still around and is into everything from travel to investments and gas bars. Owns goodyear facilities etc! You can get your tires changed, get a ticket to Hawaii and even buy a lush Portuguese Villa in the South of Portugal! LOL, no joke.

    Austin, that doesnt surprise me. I bet he didnt even mean to screw up the Porsches. You'd be surprised how many people get Porsches mixed up, or even spell it correctly. That Austin is just lost at times. What a bloke! ;)

    V.
     
  15. Glenn1234

    Glenn1234 Rookie

    Feb 22, 2014
    1
    Coquitlam
    Full Name:
    Glenn Wood
    I was reading a story there of a person here shovelling snow infront of downtown Mazda I worked there back in the early eighties I rember seeing mr Vinko visiting there one of the salesman there was named Sergio I think he worked for Vinko before. He. Worked with David Geneen I herd David Geneen was not doing so well any one know of what happened to him he was a good guy , along with old man Vinko my father also knew Vinko I think he went to school with him an sold cars with him back in the early days
     
  16. bernardo66

    bernardo66 The Crazy Cat Man
    Moderator Owner

    Dec 14, 2003
    21,807
    Montreal Canada
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    Bernie
    Egad! Resurrecting a 7 year old thread???
     
  17. godabitibi

    godabitibi F1 Veteran

    Jan 11, 2012
    6,002
    La Sarre, Quebec, Ca
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    Claude Laforest
    9 years old ! ;-) But it's a good thing, I like new readings.
     
  18. bernardo66

    bernardo66 The Crazy Cat Man
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    Dec 14, 2003
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    9? oops...winter is long this year. :eek:
     
  19. starboy444

    starboy444 F1 Veteran

    Oct 7, 2006
    7,265
    Toronto, Canada
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    Lucas
    There is only one man who can answer these questions.

    The Don of Dundas, The Captain of College streets ...Vasco :D
     
  20. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
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    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
    Toronto
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    Vasco
    Vinko is still alive. 90-ish or so old. He now just sits in his empty dealership on Dundas passing time just watching the cars go by.

    Still has dozens and dozens of cars stashed away elsewhere. He is in good spirits and I still stop buy to hear some great stories. Definitely a legend around here. At one point he was THE biggest car guy in Canada.

    I have many stories told to me by other significant car guys...
     
  21. bernardo66

    bernardo66 The Crazy Cat Man
    Moderator Owner

    Dec 14, 2003
    21,807
    Montreal Canada
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    Bernie
    The "Luigi" of Toronto!
     
  22. godabitibi

    godabitibi F1 Veteran

    Jan 11, 2012
    6,002
    La Sarre, Quebec, Ca
    Full Name:
    Claude Laforest
    When I saw the 1970 picture I don't know why but CRISTOFARO came to my mind for the Montreal area.
     
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  23. TOwild

    TOwild Rookie

    Jun 4, 2014
    4
    Toronto
    Full Name:
    Carl
    I went there last summer to try buy the 560 SEC he had there, the car was perfect, it had 49k kms on the clock, we had a nice chat about cars and Alfa Romeo's bc my father had an Alfa yers ago in Portugal, but when it comes to make bussiness was madness, he was asking more than 40k for any car, a R129 500 from 98 and it needed a lot of work, specially with the paint he wanted 25k. since then the lot is empty, i think there's only one car in the lot, I need to talk to him again, i don't live far.
     
  24. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
    Toronto
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    Vasco
    He has since closed. He is well up there in age and doesn't function very well now. I spoke to his wife a couple of months ago and apparently his memory is gone. So, we know how that goes :(

    All but two old cars have been moved and sold off. I know he has another compound but who knows what is left. I sold his a few cars. Good times.
     
  25. RDI

    RDI Formula Junior

    Jul 11, 2009
    277
    Ontario Canada
    I remember back in 91 buying an e30 m3 from Vinko. At the time is was a great car priced well below current market. At that time the Vinko I dealt with looked and acted just like Andrew Dice clay. Is this the same Vinko everyone is talking about ?

    If so he was funny as hell straight shooter and swore as much as a drunk sailor. Needless to say it was my first car purchase at age 16 and I will never forget that guy or the car.
     
  26. ClassicFerrari

    ClassicFerrari F1 World Champ
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    Jan 7, 2004
    16,798
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    Vasco
    That's a serious first car! Try buying one now for that price :)

    Vinko did swear a lot. He's a tall gentleman with heavy accent. Not sure its the gentleman you dealt with. He had quite a few characters sell for him.

    I am trying my best to get a copy of a picture that shows his place back in the day with a Miura outside for sale!
     
  27. zudnic

    zudnic Formula 3

    Nov 13, 2014
    1,662
    Vancouver
    I knew Vinko fairly well in the 1990's. We'd go to various casino's on the first of the month, he would get drunk and gamble away obscene amounts of money. The reason it would be the first of the month, well that's when he'd collect the rent on various buildings and houses he owned around Toronto. I would bet he was the biggest land owner in Little Italy, all mortgage free. I knew both his sons as well, one wasn't happy about our casino excursions, but Vinko trusted my driving. We would take one of his cars of the lot.

    Not surprised he is retired, I would have thought it would have happened years ago. About the houses he owned, he owned several near his dealership, all with garages built out back. Each holding several cars. I remember in 96 or 7, he had two 308's in his garages. His lot may have been empty, but its likely he had a few cars in garages. He also bought a fairly large warehouse building in Etobicoke in 97, room for about 20 cars and he filled it. When I knew him, he had a couple Rolls Royce's in that building, two silver shadows, a spur and a Corniche. So he could still have a few cars out there.

    If he doesn't have cars, he must still have more real estate then anyone knows about. He did own the building MS Motors was in, plus the one beside it, few more buildings like it and a dozen or more houses in Little Italy. Met his wife a few times, very nice lady.
     
  28. zudnic

    zudnic Formula 3

    Nov 13, 2014
    1,662
    Vancouver
    He must be late 90's. Back in 1998 I think he told me he was 82. Surprised he didn't shut down sooner. I was also under the impression his lovely wife is a few years younger.

    I knew Vinko well in the 1990's, met his wife a few times. Bought a Jaguar Series III Vanden Plas from him and we became "friends". Somehow, we went to the casino's, drove a car off his lot to get there. He owned a few buildings, the MS Motors location was one of them, also a large number of houses, a small apartment building or two. Probably more then I know about. First of the month, he'd cash rent checks and want to go out to a casino. He liked my driving and Id often end up taking him. He would get drunk and gamble obscene amounts of money. Told me he didn't care, they don't need the money and besides all his real estate was paid for. He didn't like being watched gambling, but few glimpses I did get, he swore at the dealers, but tipped them well. Oh Vinko and tipping, he tipped everybody. I once went to the grocery store with him and he handed the girl $10. She didn't want it, but he made her take it. He was kind of old man charming with her.

    About those houses he owned, a few he built garages behind them. I seem to remember five garages and a large lot near his dealership. All filled with cars, I remember two 308's, but I also know he sold them. Beside the old MS Motors location, he owned the neighboring building, about 5,000sqft. of floor space. He filled that with cars, a few Rolls Royce's, a spur, a cloud and at least two shadows, that I can remember. He may have cleared the dealer lot, but he might have some cars left somewhere. He even had a few at his house. Wouldn't surprise me if he's forgotten about some.
     

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